As a baby boomer, I know that there are still many opportunities for me here, in this country no matter my actual age.
I remember that thirteen years ago I decided to go back to school for a new career in interior design. On my winter break, I went to Belgium. When I was standing in line for the museum ticket, I saw the sign Students Tickets. I switched the line because that is who I was a student. The clerk at the desk returned my crispy new student’s ID and looked at me as if I had two heads.
She laughed, “Don’t you see the sign? This is for students! You are too old to be a student!”
The truth is there are not many places in the world where you could change careers after forty or go back to school. In fact, the cut off age in many counties is as young old.
My mother lost her sleep when I hopped on the plane to go to America with ninety dollars and a baby on the way. She thought that I did not know what I was doing. Twenty four years later I have to say that she was right. I didn’t quite have an idea about my plans. Just wanted my baby to grow up in a free world, away from the Soviets. And I was not alone. Many of us, young crazies of the eighties ran away to become mothers, wives, successful paycheck makers and business owners in the new world where your age does not always mean that you are cut off from growing as a person. “All you have to do is believe”, (a little Jennifer Hudson here). It sounds like a cliché, so what? It is still true.
So, while the opinionated Belgian clerk is ready to trash a student’s ID of anyone who is over thirty-two, many of my baby boomer friends make six and seven digit figure salaries rolling their second or even third careers. And while the foolish clerk would rather check out my bucket list than checking me in as a student, I am soaking in millenniums-style-techie-stuff I need for my business.
The best thing that ever happened to me on my second life journey away from the Soviets, the one that I never take for granted, is the permission and the right to choose happiness at any age. This feeling is called FREEDOM.
When I felt that my paycheck did not feed my soul, I waited, and then quit my day job. I never looked back no matter how hard it was. I guess it was only because I knew that I would always have the opportunity to change my life around. At the age of forty, I went back to college and at forty-three got my second degree in interior design. I feel so fortunate to get up every morning knowing that I can help change someone’s life by editing their living space. My heart beats fast when another happy family enjoys their home.
My readers and fans are my inspiration. They are now all over the globe. As I write articles here and chat with my fans through social media I am happy to help anyone with their decorating dilemma. My heart glows to know that my company’s work is selected and included by many people in their idea books. I believe that my passion for age-related home modifications is valid with eighty-five million baby boomers. As a baby boomer, I believe in a sensational, fulfilled life at any age.
How about you? What is your “road to independence?”